March 13 – 17, 2024
The SPRING KEY WEST POKER RUN puts a different spin on its November Key West Poker Run counterpart, with a casual format that features a completely different vibe and backdrop for this three-day spring fling. This event takes place mid-March at the height of spring break, when the Florida Keys and Key West are enjoying a high volume of tourism, but the powerboat racing scene is absent from the format which takes a little pressure off the challenges of docking and lodging that are experienced for the November version of this event. The other advantage for participants is the freedom to visit attractive boating hotspots like scenic Boca Grande in the Mule Keys, which authorities typically close to recreational boaters during the November dates..
The poker run agenda features a Thursday morning departure from Miami, starting with a rendezvous start for the first group at Haulover Inlet followed by a second rendezvous at Grove Harbour Marina in Coconut Grove. The course will continue southbound through the protected waters of Biscayne Bay, with the usual stopover for lunch at the landmark Gilberts Resort in Key Largo. From there, the course continues through the Upper Keys, with optional stopovers in Marathon for fuel, before continuing on the final leg to Key West. Typically, the arrival times in Key West are late afternoon around 4pm, and many of the boats will be able to dock at the Conch Republic Seafood Company docks, which will be the event headquarters for the next three days. Other docking locations are offered at various marinas in the Key West Historic Seaport, including the Key West City Marina. The Hyatt Centric is the host hotel for the event, just steps away from where the boats will be docked. While there are plenty of land-based options for dining and entertainment for the participants, organizers generally offer a casual Friday happy hour get-together and a more formal Saturday evening dinner party at the Conch Republic Seafood company.
Boating activities include short daytrips to popular area destinations including Boca Grande on Friday, and Woman Key on Saturday. Weather permitting, the more adventurous teams may want to explore Fort Jefferson at Dry Tortugas National Park, which is approximately a 150-mile roundtrip from Key West.
Please note: This event will sell out early due to limitations of lodging and docking inventory. Please use the registration link below to register for the event, and be sure to have all of your crew details ready, so that names and apparel sizes can be provided on the booking form. ACTIVE FPC membership is required to register for this event. If you are not currently an active FPC member, please use this link to activate your membership program.
FPC MEMBERSHIP LINK: Membership Packages – Florida Powerboat Club (flpowerboat.com)
CALL FPC with any questions at: 954-545-1414
Office Hours: 10am- 5pm – Monday- Thursday
EMAIL questions to: [email protected]
Launching & Departure Locations:
With the continuing challenges of finding adequate facilities for truck & trailer parking in Miami, FPC will continue to promote safe, low cost launching & parking at Harbourtown Marina in Fort Lauderdale. Participants may arrive on the day before departure, get their boats launched and head offshore or on protected ICW to Miami, where limited overnighting facilities will be available.
Haulover Marine Center remains active as a departure and check-in location for several boats, but this is primarily for those members who are currently under storage contract at this facility. For out of town poker run teams, the practice of arriving to stage, unload, and park trucks & trailers at this location is available only to a select few visitors, at premium rates. FPC will provide the contact information at time of registration, for this option. Please note that Haulover Park boat ramps and parking lots are under a major county-funded reconstruction project. Dockside breakfast will be offered, and Poker cards will be distributed from the Haulover fuel dock at time of departure.
TNT Marine Center is also considered an official launch location, but reserved primarily for TNT storage customers. All boats coming from TNT may rendezvous at Haulover Inlet with the other Haulover Marine center boats.
Venetian Marina/Biscayne Marriott: A limited number of slips will be available to FPC participants, along with hotel rooms at the Biscayne Marriott just steps from the boat docks. Rates will be provided but typically average $6.00/ft for private slip with a special booking code, and rooms in the $250-$300 per night range.
Grove Harbour Marina: This marina is located south of Downtown Miami, and is the most southerly departure marina. Grove Harbour is a poker run check-in location, and will also offer staging and truck-trailer parking, for a limited number of participants. FPC organizers will be on hand, for poker run check-in and a casual Einstein’s Bagel dockside breakfast will be provided to participants before departure. Please note – appointments must be made for special services such as off-loading with forklift and truck/trailer parking.
Miami Lodging: FPC will assist with lodging needs at all departure locations. (rates listed on registration forms)
- Haulover Marine Center/ TNT Marine Center: Trump International Sunny Isles Beach
- Venetian Marina: Biscayne Marriott & Doubletree Grand Hotel
- Grove Harbour Marina: Courtyard by Marriott, Coconut Grove
Key West Lodging:
- Hyatt Centric Key West- 601 Front St, Key West – Rates start in the mid-$600’s – $800’s: see booking form for selections & rates
- Alternative lodging and vacation rentals may be available- call the FPC office.
FPC will take over a large section of the docking basin at Conch Republic Seafood Company. I this section approx. 18-boats can be dock in three rows of rafting. This is a protected basin with no wind or current and is along the main walkway in the Historic Seaport. Additional docking, including private slips will be offered in the same harbor at (1)Key West Bight city marina and 2) A&B Marina, which is adjacent to the Conch Republic Seafood Co.
Docking at the Conch Republic will be offered first to sponsors, since this is a premium viewing area, and all remaining space will be assigned to those participants according to registration date and member status. FPC prefers to use pre-assigned rows based on matching up similar sized vessels in a safe rafting format.
Sample Itinerary for Spring Key West Poker Run
- Wednesday staging in North Miami or Coconut Grove- Hotels available both locations.
- Thurs: 10:30am Depart Haulover Marina- Rendezvous Grove Harbour: 11 AM
- Lunch in Florida Keys and fuel stops planned- Key Largo / Marathon
- Thurs: 4 PM: Arrival Key West Harbor – Multiple docking options
- Guest Check-In- Hyatt Centric Key West Front St. –Harbor front resort.
- Friday Noon: Local cruising & raft-up picnic in area waters- Woman Key-Boca Grande
- Friday Night: Plenty of social & dinner activities available
- Sat: Optional day-trip to Dry Tortugas (150 miles roundtrip)
- Sat Night: FPC Dinner Party – Conch Republic Seafood Co.
- Sunday: Return from Key West to Miami
Note: Schedule subject to change. Updated itineraries will be provided to all event participants at check in.
Powerboats: $895 (Includes: Boat, Captain, & Mate)
Extra Crew: $200 (Includes: souvenir event tee, catered function passes for dockside breakfast, poker run lunch, and Sat evening dinner party)
Safety Management Fee:
Sportboat Class (Green decal) $50 for boats running 40-69 mph
Perfomance Class (Yellow decal) $75 for boats running 70-99mph
Hi Performance (Red decal) $100 for boats running 100 mph +
Applicants for participation must meet the following requirements with no exceptions:
- Registered boat owner must be an active member with Florida Powerboat Club. (social or video membership are not qualified member programs)
- Registered boats may be approximately 25-80 feet in length, and must be fully insured with liability coverages. A proof of insurance must be submitted in the form of a declaration page. (Detailed and accurate engine data, horsepower and performance specifications must also be submitted to company officials.)
- All captains & co-drivers must attend a mandatory poker run captains safety meeting on the evening prior to departure. Captains will sign a safety waiver which includes compliance with guidelines that include: No consumption of Alcoholic beverages or medications that diminish operating skills prior to or during the poker run.
- ALL OCCUPANTS (including passengers) of the vessel must sign safety waiver provided by Florida Powerboat Club prior to departure.
- All OCCUPANTS are required to wear USCG approved Personal flotation devices during on-plane operation. Exceptions will be made in the case of use Lifeline or other specialty safety products that do may carry the USCG official approval.
- All participants are required to have their vessels in compliance with USCG safety standards.